Tuesday, June 13, 2023

Trump will appear in court on allegations that he handled classified documents improperly.

 MIAMI In a historic criminal prosecution accusing the former president of hoarding top-secret government documents, brazenly exhibiting them to guests, and attempting to hide them from investigators who ordered their return, Donald Trump was scheduled to make his first court appearance on Tuesday.

Trump showed his trademark swagger as he entered the Miami courtroom, adamant as he has been throughout years of legal troubles that he has done nothing wrong and is being targeted for political reasons. However, the seriousness of the situation is obvious as he faces 37 felony counts accusing him of knowingly keeping sensitive data that, according to the prosecution, might have endangered national security if made public.

The case has significant political ramifications for Trump, who is now in the lead in the early goings of the Republican primary for president in 2024. But given the potential for a lengthy prison term, it also carries serious legal repercussions. The papers probe has stood out for two reasons: the sheer volume of evidence gathered by prosecutors and the seriousness of the charges, even for a defendant whose post-presidential life has been dominated by probes.

It's also a turning point for the Justice Department, which has never before filed charges against a former president until last week. By giving the matter to a special counsel last year, Attorney General Merrick Garland, a Joe Biden appointee, intended to shield the department from political criticism. On Friday, special counsel Jack Smith remarked, "We have one set of laws in this country, and they apply to everyone."

The arraignment, though largely procedural in nature, is the latest in an unprecedented public reckoning this year for Trump. He is accused in New York of receiving hush money during his 2016 campaign and is also the subject of ongoing investigations into efforts to rig the 2020 election in Atlanta and Washington. In the face of obvious legal risk, he has attempted to portray confidence by branding Smith as "deranged," promising to remain in the campaign, and setting up a speech and fundraiser for Tuesday night at his Bedminster, New Jersey, golf club.

In an interview with Americano Media on Monday, Trump stated that "they're using this because they can't win the election fairly and squarely."

Along with the court appearance, there may be demonstrations and other forms of unrest. Some well-known supporters have shown support using scathing language. Trump has urged supporters to participate in a planned demonstration on Tuesday at the Miami courthouse, where he is anticipated to turn himself in to police.

Law enforcement authorities who are prepared for possible disturbances outside the courtroom are concerned that some Trump supporters are planned to fill buses to travel to Miami from other regions of Florida. Francis Suarez, the mayor of Miami, declared that the city would be prepared, while Manuel A. Morales, the chief of police, predicted that 50,000 demonstrators might gather in the downtown area. Depending on the size of the throng, he claimed, the city would redirect traffic and perhaps close roadways.

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